It’s not breaking news that the bee population is down. It’s been declining for some time now, which is incredibly troubling for people on team #HumansSurvivingIntoTheFuture. Because bees pollinate crops. And, as HoneyLove director Paul Hekimian tells Uproxx Reports in the video above, “If the bees stop pollinating, we wouldn’t be able to produce the amount of food to keep the current population fed…If the bees go, we go.”
Dire stakes, for sure. The good news is, while scientists try to figure out what exactly is causing the mass die-off of bees (by equipping them with teeny-tiny backpacks, no less) organizations like HoneyLove are working to expand honeybees’ habitats to the city and train up a new generation of urban beekeepers. “We’re basically foster parents,” Hekimian says.
Cities are especially ideal for honeybees because of the diversity of the plants found there. Much like humans, bees need a ten different amino acids in their diets, and to get that, they need exposure to different types of pollen — something that monoculture doesn’t provide. Another advantage of cities: the lack of pesticides. According to Hekimian, the urban-dwelling bees HoneyLove rescues are thriving.
The advantage of keeping the bees around can also be experienced at the individual level: Bruce Kalman, a chef at Pasadena’s Union Restaurant, waxes poetic about the taste of locally-grown honey. “It tastes completely different,” he tells Uproxx Reports.
Sweet news. Check out the full Uproxx Reports video, and next time you see a swarm, call a beekeeper. You might be helping save the world in the process.